As usual, all times Eastern and all predictions wrong.
7:00: Miami @ Ohio (ESPN2): Ohio has already sealed up the MAC East, but nonetheless shouldn’t overlook their in-state rivals in Miami. I like the Bobcats here.
8:00: Texas @ Texas Agricultural and Mechanical (ESPN): I’m not sure what Texas fans were expecting this year, though they have probably found this season frustrating nonetheless. Texas A&M fans, though, well, suffice it to say I’m not sure they expected to lose 2 games, much less 5. The culprit has been defense, especially their well-publicized issues holding a double-digit lead in the the second halves of games. That said, can the Longhorns even generate enough points to have a second half lead, much less a double-digit one? In their last two games against Mizzou and Kansas State Texas has only scored 18 points. Scoring has not been the issue for the Aggies. I wasn’t sure about this earlier, but now I just don’t know how Texas is going to score enough points to win this game.
- Louisville @ South Florida (ESPN2): The Big East will trend toward any scenario that makes there conference tiebreaker more complicated, so Louisville basically guaranteed to win this game.
- Eastern Michigan @ Northern Illinois (ESPNU): Toledo needs a EMU victory here to have a shot at the MAC West, but I don’t think they’re going to get it.
- Iowa @ Nebraska (ABC): ALL HAIL THE CORN BOWL. No, really. That said, I think the Huskers can get back on track in the game and earn the world’s first trophy that features REAL CORN. (Just don’t tell Artur Boruc.)
- Houston @ Tulsa (FSN): Tulsa may be the most formidable obstacle Houston has played to date, if for no other reason than because they’re the first team they’ve played that can keep up with them on offense. Of course, with a BCS now on the line for the Cougars, there’s just that much added pressure. I still like them to prevail, but this will be their stiffest test of the year, I think.
2:30: Arkansas @ Louisiana State (CBS): I’ve been saying this all year: the Razorbacks feature probably the only truly competent offense in the SEC. No other team in the SEC has been able to put up 30 as often against quality opponents. The problem is, the best team they’ve played so far, Alabama, held them to just 14. LSU’s defense is as good as Bama’s if not better. The question for LSU is, of course, the offense. They’ve been more potent this year, but the whole operation feels as though it’s just a few Jordan Jefferson fumbles or Jarret Lee interceptions away from total disaster. Do I think this disaster will occur in Baton Rouge Friday afternoon? No, probably not. This game is usually pretty great though, and comes highly recommended from me.
- Boston College @ Miami (ABC): Speaking of total disasters, if the Miami locker room is really disappointed about the Canes not going to a bowl game that’s exactly what this could turn into. Then again, I’m not convinced BC could score enough points to win this game even Miami didn’t even come out on defense at all.
- Colorado @ Utah (FSN): Fun fact: Utah now has the inside track to win the Pac-12 South. Yeah. They should be able to beat a Colorado team that just lost 45-6 to UCLA.
- Pittsburgh @ West Virginia (ESPN): It’s the Backyard Brawl! And maybe for the last time in awhile. Against, for maximum Big East chaos I think WVU needs to win for the 4-way tie to be preserved, so that’s probably what will happen.
- Texas-El Paso @ Central Florida (CBSS): I have UTEP winning for the purposes of my bowl predictions, so, yeah, I guess I’ll take the Miners here.
10:15: California @ Arizona State (ESPN): Cal has been awful on the road this year, with their only such win a 36-33 overtime win against a Colorado team that is usually paired with adjectives like “hapless”. Therefore, I have to go with the increasingly, erm, hapless Sun Devils here.
Have a good Turkey Day and weekend predictions will go up on Friday!